Texas v. Ohio State: The Siesta Bowl

UT45-OU35.jpgWas watching the Cotton Bowl with some buddies on lower Greenville when Ole Miss sacked Texas Tech quarterback Graham Harrell for a game-clinching safety. While most of the joint emitted a primal scream, spiked their red-n-black hats, or ordered another mind-numbing shot, one dude sat and calmly declared:

"Dudn't matter."

And you know what, he's right.

In news that will surely prompt an "A-Men" from the congregation, I hate the BCS.

Why? Because it robs fans of quality bowl games. Tonight, for example. Texas has nothing to play for against Ohio State. Oh, I know all about the implausible theory that the Longhorns could somehow snatch a piece of the national title if they whip the Buckeyes, Oklahoma squeaks past Florida and voters somehow suddenly remember 45-35 from Oct. 11 in our back yard.

But, c'mon, Texas shouldn't be here.

Texas wants - and should be - in Thursday's BCS National Championship Game. Instead, it's in a meaningless Fiesta Bowl consolation bowl that dudn't matter. I know it. You know it. And, most important, the players know it.

Just ask Tech, who despite its 11-1 record was relegated to Dallas. Just ask Alabama, who despite its 11-1 record was relegated to playing Utah. Each good enough to win a possible playoff tournament, neither had focus nor motivation in the lead-up to their bowls and promptly lost to inferior foes. On neutral fields with a chance at a national title game on the line, Tech beats Mississippi and Bama beats Utah 9 out of 10 times.

But, thanks to the BCS, we're subjected to great teams puking up pathetic effort. Kinda like you'd be if you knew deep down you almost/should've gotten a date with her, only to be left with her. You'd show up and go through the motions, but you wouldn't - you just couldn't - be at your chivalrous best.

The system, seemingly this year more than ever, leaves college football void of credibility and legitimacy. In most sports, a loss is a loss. But in the BCS, a loss in November is somehow weighted heavier than a loss in October. Why?!

OU-Florida should be a great game. The winner will be a deserving champ. But the Cotton, Fiesta, Rose, etc. have been downgraded into impactless exhibitions and that's just sad. Remember, there's a reason college basketball's Final Four and the NFL did away with its third-place games.

Because it dudn't matter. - Richie Whitt


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